Saturday, 23 January 2016

For a change of scenery (and a bit of exercise) a trip up and over the mountain was the first port of call for morning census. Small clusters of Herring Gulls occupied the lower grass and rocky slopes of the east side, where soon enough there will be hundreds of gulls making up the large colonies during the breeding season. Four Raven, presumably two pairs, tussled in the strong winds and a couple of small gatherings of Choughs fed along the west side of the mountain. On the way down the ridge coming towards the narrows a male Sparrowhawk, looking very much like the same bird seen a day or so ago harassing Magpies around Nant, darted low to the water across the bay and along the mountain slopes.

On the narrows a further two Ravens, bringing the total to six for the day, were picking through the seaweed along with a Magpie. Roosting on the rocks as the tide went out was a mixed flock of 77 Oystercatchers and 51 Curlews, in the same bay nine Redshanks and 11 Turnstones resided along with a haul out of 103 Grey Seals.

A late sea watch from the north hide as the light was fading and the rain set in was largely uneventful,  5 Fulmar, 23 Guillemots, a Gannet and 4 Kittiwakes. A Red-throated Diver disappearing into the murk at the end was, however, a bonus!

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